Bantam Tools Blog

Devin's Wooden Digital LED Clock

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Dec 13, 2018 10:27:56 AM

Bantam Tools' own technical manager Devin Cooper recently delved into the world of woodworking by taking a class. Naturally, he then merged his knowledge of PCB creation with his newly honed woodworking skills to make this neat digital LED clock. He designed a custom Arduino shield and milled it on the precise, reliable Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine. Devin also shared his EAGLE design file. We chatted with him to learn more.

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Topics: PCB Files, PCB Design, Electrical Engineering, Arduino, Projects, Circuit Boards

How to: PCB Racer

Posted by David Casey on Dec 12, 2018 1:48:38 PM

The PCB Racer is a fun and simple project to get started with the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine and basic electronics. It uses a pager motor to turn the drive wheel of a small race car made entirely out of double-sided FR-1 PCB material. Almost all of the parts for the car are milled with the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling, including the chassis and the wheels. The remaining parts can be found at most electronics retailers.

Note: This project assumes you have basic knowledge of how to run the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine. If you're just getting started, check out our full library of guides

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Topics: PCB Files, PCB Design, Tutorials, How-To, Electronics, CNC, Circuit Boards

Best Practices for Cleaning PCBs After Milling

Posted by Pete Riley on Nov 14, 2018 3:26:44 PM

Last week, on our Instagram page, one of our community members asked what the recommended technique is for cleaning up PCBs after milling one on the precise Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine. While we responded to the thread, we thought this information could be useful to more folks out there. If you've ever wondered that same question, this post is for you.

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Topics: PCB Design, Workflow, End Mills, How-To

Patchr + Bantam Tools = Super Simple PCBs

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Jun 29, 2018 11:10:07 AM

The Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine was designed to make CNC milling, and in particular making PCBs, easier and more accessible than ever before. We set out to democratize PCB production, putting a powerful tool within reach of engineers, artists, educators, students, and makers of all stripes. To some, however, the software choices available to create PCB design files seem prohibitive and difficult to use. Enter Patchr, innovative new PCB design software that employs an easy-to-use circuit design tool.

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Topics: PCB Design, PCB Files, Workflow, Electronics

From the Archives: Convert Gerber Files to G-Code with FlatCAM

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on May 9, 2018 11:10:55 AM

Here at Bantam Tools, we believe one of the most important assets we can provide to CNC mill users is a robust library of support materials. Sharing knowledge is caring about community. To that end, we've been digging through our extensive Bantam Tools archive of support materials and unearthing some timeless gems to resurface and share.

Over on our YouTube channel, one of our most popular videos happens to be from 2015, and it's still proving to be useful, getting views and positive comments to this day. It covers Converting Gerber Files to G-Code with FlatCAM, a skill useful to any PCB designer and CNC mill user. 

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Topics: PCB Files, PCB Design, Gerbers, How-To, CNC

Build Your Own Bantam Tools 8-Bit Capacitive Synth

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Feb 26, 2018 10:21:12 AM

 

With the professional precision and reliability the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine offers, it can singlehandedly turn your classroom into an electrical engineering lab.  We're confident that once you see what our easy, fast, and affordable Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine can do, you'll want one in your classroom.

There's something infectious about 80s synth music. You almost can't help but to get visions of classic Atari games. Bantam Tools content developer Emily Coker was intrigued by a synth project we put out about four years ago and wanted to give it a healthy refresh. The result is our new 8-Bit Capacitive Synth project (click link to see full project), a super fun build for anyone with a Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine, from seasoned pros to students. 

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Topics: PCB Files, PCB Design, Electrical Engineering, Tutorials, How-To

Technique: How to Apply Solder Masks to Milled PCBs

Posted by Dr. Craig F. Feied on Jan 31, 2018 10:32:14 AM

Editor's Note: A solder mask is a thin layer of polymer applied to the copper traces of a printed circuit board (PCB) for protection against oxidation and to prevent solder bridges from forming between closely spaced solder pads. Community member, physician, and technologist Craig F. Feied has developed a great technique for applying solder masks to boards milled on his Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine, which he has documented and shared here.

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Topics: PCB Design, PCB Files, Solder Mask, Tutorials, How-To

Learn How to Design, Mill, and Paint Custom PCB Pins

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Jan 24, 2018 10:14:00 AM

Adafruit's super-talented Collin Cunningham shared a great how-to for making custom pins using copper PCBs as the base material—double-sided, copper-clad FR-4 boards, to be exact. Collin used not just any mill, but our reliable little PCB mill to make the project. We got a sneak peek at these neat pins in our recent roundup of community builds.

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Topics: PCB Design, PCB Files, SVG Files, Tutorials, How-To, Adafruit, Projects, Circuit Boards

Everything You Need to Know About Milling PCBs

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Jan 10, 2018 11:15:51 AM

With the wealth of materials our Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine can handle with ease, the potential of what you can make is endless, but the area where our small-but-mighty mill shines the brightest is in milling PCBs. After all, PCB is our mill's middle name. We put professional precision and reliability directly on your desktop, so the rate at which you prototype is only limited by your imagination, not the return rate of the board house you use. To boot, we've got you covered with a full library of support guides, detailing all aspects of milling PCBs. Here we offer an overview of our PCB-specific guides. 

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Topics: PCB Files, PCB Design, Tutorials, Circuit Boards

Othermill PCB Milling and Masking Tutorials from SAIC

Posted by Goli Mohammadi on Apr 18, 2017 9:04:00 AM

Founded in 1866, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) is not only one of the most well-respected art and design schools in the U.S., but it’s also known for its forward-thinking interdisciplinary curricular offerings and for pushing the envelope on what education in the arts can look like. We’ve previously covered their use of desktop manufacturing tools and are proud that Othermills are among their robust tool offerings.

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Topics: PCB Design, Solder Mask